A black and white photo image old-style bus with people walking in a colourful town landscape


July - September 2022

A deep dive into our collective history – a magical AR and VR immersion in the hidden histories that shaped 15 UK towns and cities.

A journey through time and space – and the UK’s largest immersive storytelling project

A magical new way to explore the stories that shaped where we live and who we are

StoryTrails the UK's largest immersive storytelling project

Journeys through time and space

StoryTrailsis a breathtaking deep dive into our collective histories – an extraordinary new way to experience the past in the present, and in the very same places where history happened.

StoryTrails invites people to explore their towns and cities through the magic of augmented and virtual reality (AR and VR). Squares, streets, libraries and other locations have been transformed into virtual portals to experiences that remix the amazing archives of the BBC and the British Film Institute (BFI) in AR and VR.

StoryTrails is led the StoryFutures Academy, working with a host of collaborators – including 50 emerging and next-generation creatives, recruited via a UK-wide open call. These 50 creatives have created AR trails, immersive installations and VR experiences, all of which have been enjoyed by tens of thousands of people in 15 UK towns and cities.

StoryTrails has also led to a new film, created by writer, historian and StoryTrails Executive Producer David Olusoga. Available on BBC iPlayer, The People’s Piazza: A History of Covent Garden using some of the cutting-edge technologies that brought StoryTrails so vividly to life.

And the StoryTrails story continues with the StoryTrails app. Taking you on an AR journey through time and place, the app is available for iOS and Android – and it’s free.

Where and when

StoryTrails visited Blackpool, Bradford, Bristol, Dumfries, Dundee, Lambeth, Lewisham, Lincoln, Newport, Omagh, Sheffield, Slough, Swansea, Swindon and Wolverhampton between July and September 2022.

A great way to experience and enjoy our town’s history.

— Robert Buckland, Secretary of State for Wales

Using new technologies, this tour has highlighted how crucial libraries are to supporting storytelling.

— Karen Napier, The Reading Agency

Audiences accessing public libraries as a resource and community hub for information and technology in such a creative way is really heartening.

— Isabel Hunter, Libraries Connected